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Oracy is the speaking and listening skills, behaviours and language necessary for communication and collaboration. 

Oracy is the ability to articulate ideas, develop understanding and engage with others through spoken language.  Oracy develops pupils’ confidence, articulacy and capacity to learn.


The Oracy Framework




At St John with St Augustine’s, the development of Oracy within our curriculum is a key driver of change to improve outcomes for our children.  Our aim in spoken language is to provide a sound foundation for the development of oracy skills from debate to poetry and verbal feedback to talk for presentational purposes.  Our classrooms are rich in talk, from effective questioning to constructive peer discussions and teachers use talk skilfully to develop and encourage critical thinking.  The ability to speak eloquently, articulate ideas and thoughts, collaborate with peers and have the confidence to express your views are all vital life skills that support success in learning and life in general.


Inclusion is at the heart of our Oracy intention and all children are given the support and opportunities they need to thrive in this subject.  By embedding Oracy in all aspects of our culture and weaving it through the curriculum, children are able to respond to high expectations and explicit teaching and modelling of speaking and listening.  Classrooms are distinguishable by the sound of purposeful talk.   At St John with St Augustine’s, we recognise how vital spoken language skills are for children and we want to equip them with the tools that they need to be heard, not just in school, but in their future life and career.


Our Oracy curriculum will enable children to:

  • speak with confidence, clarity and eloquence
  • recognise the importance of listening in conjunction with speaking
  • be confident in the value of their own opinions and be able to express and justify them to others
  • adapt their use of language for a range of different purposes and audiences
  • sustain a logical argument, question, reason and respond to others appropriately
  • concentrate, interpret and respond appropriately to a wide range of immersive experiences
  • be open-minded, to respect the contribution of others and take into account their views
  • celebrate the diversity of languages, dialects and accents in the school and appreciate the experience and value the contributions of children with a wide variety of linguistic abilities
  • share their learning in an engaging, informative way through presentations, recitals, drama, poetry and debate



So much in life depends on being a good communicator, so it’s vital that children learn the importance of oracy from a young age. Children who start school with limited communication skills are six times less likely than their peers to reach the expected standards in English at the end of Year 6.  We are aware of children’s different starting points therefore developing oracy skills is crucial in improving our children’s life chances.






At St John with St Augustine’s we have adopted the Voice 21 framework for oracy which breaks down the teaching of speaking and listening into four strands:

  • Physical
  • Cognitive
  • Linguistic
  • Social and Emotional


We promote classrooms rich in talk, in which questions are planned, peer conversations are modelled and scaffolded and the teacher uses talk skilfully to develop thinking. From EYFS to Year 6, children are given opportunities to develop oracy skills and build their confidence in talk for formal and informal situations, both in and outside the classroom.


We have an embedded oracy curriculum ensuring the children have an opportunity to practice a variety of types of talk and practise the skills needed for different oracy outcomes:

  • exploratory talk
  • interactive/negotiation
  • recitation
  • debate and persuasion
  • building understanding
  • to inform/teach  
  • entertainment and expression


The deliberate, explicit and systematic teaching of oracy across the school and throughout the curriculum will support our children to make progress in the four strands of oracy. Our children will have opportunities to 'Speak like an Expert’ Deepening and embedding subject knowledge, understanding and reasoning.


A range of purposeful opportunities across the curriculum are used to encourage learning through talk and learning to talk.




Oracy skills will be assessed using the oracy framework. Teachers and Senior Leaders can use the progression statements from the Oracy Progression Map to monitor progress and attainment. Each year group has oracy objectives which build on and extend from the previous year ensuring progression as the children move through the school.

Through the teaching of oracy, children will be able to:

  • Speak fluently, with confidence and clarity in front of an audience including talking in full sentences
  • Explore ideas through talk
  • Deliberately select gestures that support the delivery of ideas e.g. gesturing towards someone if referencing their idea
  • Recognise the value of listening to what others say
  • Use conjunctions to organise and sequence their ideas
  • Adapt how they speak in different situations according to the audience, including using Standard English
  • Value their own opinions and be able to express them to others
  • Begin to reflect on their oracy skills and identify areas of strength and areas to improve
  • Ask questions to find out more about a subject
  • Respond appropriately to what others say, challenge each other’s opinions and develop their own reasoned arguments
  • Be open-minded, value the contribution of others and take account of their views
  • Appreciate the diversity of languages, dialects and accents in the school
  • Consider the impact of their words on others when giving feedback
  • Share their learning in an engaging, informative way through formal presentationsarents


Oracy Progression Map